As the end of year nears, businesses typically revise their fourth-quarter plans, check their progress in accomplishing annual goals, and start working on budget proposals for the following year.

November 7, 2016

3 Min Read
Don’t Ignore Winter’s Fury: Back Up Now

As the end of year nears, businesses typically revise their fourth-quarter plans, check their progress in accomplishing annual goals, and start working on budget proposals for the following year.

Fall is a time of reflection, and MSPs should capitalize on this by bringing up business continuity strategies with clients. Winter isn’t far off and, as we reminded you in the spring, businesses will take weather patterns into consideration when planning budgets and reviewing business continuity plans.

It’s the perfect time to ask clients: “If a snowstorm shuttered your business tomorrow, how confident are you that you’ll recover your data?”

That question can kick off a meaningful conversation about business continuity. Tell the client you’d like to review whatever continuity plans and technology are in place, and make recommendations based on your findings. You will need to talk them into freeing up the money to fill any gaps.

Assess Existing Plans

MSPs typically have the ability to collect data about clients’ systems through RMM and PSA platforms. This data tells you a lot about the health of your clients’ networks, their security posture, and if they are backing up their critical business data on a regular basis.

If you already handle backup and recovery, you know how often clients run backups and what data they replicate. If you don’t handle the process for them, you need to make an assessment. You can investigate whether the client has a backup procedure, whether it’s handled internally or by a provider, and how thorough their data replication efforts are.

Your recommendations could potentially save the business, for clients who aren’t backing up at all, are missing significant amounts of critical data or are using unreliable backup solutions.

Make Recommendations

For clients that already back up their data regularly, you’ll need to find out whether they have a business continuity plan to complement their backup processes. After all, backup is just a small part of the business continuity plan.

If a storm closes the business for a few days or a week, have employees been instructed on how to report to work? Are procedures in place so that they can work from home? Do they have easy access to backup data in case they need a restore? Are employees’ machines set up to continue backing up while working from home?

For clients that don’t back up or don’t do it regularly, it’s a different conversation. You’ll need to discuss implementing a backup solution. Smart solutions offer, preferably a cloud-based services that automates backups and prioritizes which data to copy and what should be restored first following an outage. AA business continuity plan should be part of this conversation as well.

Deploy New Services

In making business continuity recommendations to clients, you may have to employ your best powers of persuasion. Some businesses, especially in the SMB space, still don’t understand the importance of backing up. As proof of that, GFI Software has found 53% of businesses don’t back up everyday, putting themselves at serious risk if hit by a storm or other natural disaster.

As autumn fades into winter, don’t pass up the opportunity to discuss business continuity with clients. Be sure to highlight the importance of being able to keep the business going at all time, come rain or shine.

Marvin Blough is StorageCraft’s Vice President of Worldwide Sales, where his focus is on expanding the company’s global reach by establishing channel partnerships that enhance  profitability for the channel partner.

Guest blogs such as this one are published monthly and are part of MSPmentor’s annual platinum sponsorship.

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